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Author Topic: Duchy of Warsaw 1812  (Read 381 times)

Offline Frostie

  • Scientist
  • Posts: 353
Duchy of Warsaw 1812
« on: May 26, 2022, 08:50:14 AM »
Good day all,
Looking for clarification.
In the Digby Smith book he states Duchy grenadiers in bearkins had red cords but all illustrations i see they have white!
Which do the collective feel is correct.


Offline TomMcC

  • Student
  • Posts: 17
Re: Duchy of Warsaw 1812
« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2022, 12:29:25 PM »
I would say red.

It may be that illustrations showing white have just not been coloured in by the original source artist. Then this mistake may have been repeated.

I seem to recall some years ago, there was something similar said about grenadiers of some German state (Westphalian?) having white epaulettes in an illustration. The basic and most sensible answer was that this had just not been coloured in the original picture, but the mistake was repeated leading to a false assumption.

Just my thoughts. 

Offline George1863

  • Assistant
  • Posts: 46
Re: Duchy of Warsaw 1812
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2022, 03:34:25 PM »
I think your question is a complicated one. The four regiments of the Vistula Legion had adopted French dress by 1812 and would have had white shako-cords for all rank and file, silver for officers. Grenadiers, fusiliers and voltigeurs were distinguished by red pompoms for the first, white plumes for the second and green or green/yellow plumes for the third (which is not exactly the same as the French line). For regiments in direct service to the Duchy of Warsaw, cord colour depended on whether that regiment had been issued French infantry dress or adopted uniforms based on national regulations. The plate I have is of the 9th Line, showing a fusilier and a grenadier officer, both with white cords (or silver for the officer) - which suggests that the grenadiers of the 9th, at least, had white cords to the bearskin (having adopted French-style dress). Unlike the Vistula Legion fusiler, that of the 9th has a white pompom rather than plume. Also in the plate is a voltigeur of the 2nd Line who has yellow shako-cords, just to muddy the water further. I have seen also some near-contemporary drawings of voltiguers with white cords (I think the basis of the Funcken uniform guides of the 1970s).

If you painted your grenadiers with a red plume and white cords, you certainly wouldn't be wrong. I suspect you would be equally 'not wrong' if you painted the cords red. Duchy of Warsaw foot artillery certainly had red-corded shakoes.

Offline George1863

  • Assistant
  • Posts: 46
Re: Duchy of Warsaw 1812
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2022, 03:45:41 PM »
PS. I haven't got Digby Smith, but the uniforms he gives may be of regiments issued with the Duchy's own uniforms.

Offline Frostie

  • Scientist
  • Posts: 353
Re: Duchy of Warsaw 1812
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2022, 08:11:26 AM »
Thanks guys, i will stick with red as these are Duchy troops not Vistula Legion.


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